I’m currently reading (on my mother’s almost rabid recommendation) Kevin J Anderson’s Saga of the Seven Suns. I have to say I’m not enjoying it hugely, I’m 60 pages in and the narrative and dialogue is extremely basic. Sure he’s creating a fairly interesting world but ploughing through the lame descriptions and exposition is detracting from my enjoyment of it. I’ve also read the prequels to Dune and some of the legends of Dune series that he wrote with Brian Herbert and I wasn’t massively impressed with those either.
What do others who have read him think? Also if you’ve read the Saga does it get better? My mother swears that it does and that it’s totally worth it, but then she really enjoyed the legends of Dune way after I’d given up on them as unreadble drek.
I haven’t read Saga of the Seven Suns, but I did read the Jedi Academy trilogy he did for the Star Wars canon. He was no Timothy Zahn, but it was engaging enough. Of course, at the time I read them I was young and a huge Star Wars freak, and if I read them now I might have a different opinion.
Even when I was a SW geek and hungrily read every book, even the mediocre ones, I loathed Anderson’s books. They were awful. Poorly written, dull plot, and it was like he’d never seen a Star Wars movie. The characters were out of character the whole time. Example: in one book, Han is being attacked by Imperials. Chewbacca…runs away. Yup, just turns and runs, abandoning Han.
Aside from being the most loathesome example of a genre author in living memory, Anderson is also infamous for introducing established characters primarily so as to compare them with his much more “teh 133t” personal creations, who are given godlike super-powers to make up for their complete lack of brains.
Something I’ve always wondered – is he really pretty much the sole author of the Dune sequels with Brian Herbert along to tie into Frank’s name, or can Herberts really write also? And I know there will be quibbles with the word “write.” Basically, does BH contribute anything other than his name?
No one said he was a fraud. An author who was a fraud would be one who published someone else’s work under his name, or made up situations in a supposed memoir. A hack is just an author who has no discernible talent, causing the minds of most readers to boggle as to just how s/he got a contract to write any novel.
…He wrote the X-Files paperbacks, which I’m reading right now…utter shite, all the way through (so far). The dude can’t write his way out of a paper bag. They’re kind of the “family reading club books of the week” so I’m slogging through them, but not happily. I would not recommend any of his books even without having read them.
And on a (hopefully somewhat related) side note, what’s up with Michael Moorcock? I tried to read some of his stuff for the first time since junior high, when I kinda liked him, but I quickly came to realize, that he is an utter hack, who constructs the most ridiculous run-on sentences, and commits comma abuse, until, your head spins, and you, are about, to vomit, and after about ten pages I began to wonder, how has this dude, managed to make it in the world of publishing; perhaps there is more to it than just being a good writer, and obviously there is!!!
I say this as a fan of Stephanie Perry’s work, I didn’t find the saga of the seven suns that bad. It was fluffy, and such that I could read it in a couple of short sittings which is what I like sometimes.